Universal credit progress update

Inquiry status: inquiry concluded.

The Department for Work and Pensions is introducing Universal Credit which will replace 6 means-tested benefits for working-age households. It expects Universal Credit to encourage people to work through: better financial incentives; simpler processes; and clearer job search requirements. Universal Credit is a highly ambitious and challenging transformation programme.
In February 2013, the Major Projects Authority expressed serious concerns in its project assessment review, leading to a reset of the Universal Credit programme between February and May 2013. The Committee first reported on the programme in November 2013. The Committee raised concerns about a lack of a comprehensive plan for delivering the changes and an absence of financial and other internal controls. Given the difficulties the programme had already faced, the Committee strongly recommended that the Department focus more on delivering the programme successfully than on meeting any specific timetable. This follow-up inquiry will allow the Committee to assess progress Universal Credit has made to date, to understand the costs and risks of Universal Credit, and to ensure transparency about the milestones and timescales for the programme.

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